Why will some absentee ballots in Alabama not count?

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Updated: Oct. 26, 2020 at 5:35 AM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Alabama voters have returned a record number of absentee ballots, but we’ve learned some of the mail-in ballots may not be counted.

That’s because a federal court has overturned a previous ruling that allowed some voters to submit ballots without witnesses.

So what happened? In September a federal judge ruled that voters with certain medical conditions could turn in their ballots without them being notarized or signed by two witnesses. But the U.S. Court of Appeals overturned that decision on October 13th.

Secretary of State John Merrill says not all ballots will be thrown out.

“The one’s that came in from the time Judge Kallon’s ruling was issued until the time that Judge Kallon’s ruling was overturned, they will be set aside," Merrill said. "They will be counted as regular as ballots as they should be, according to the statute.”

Merrill added that ballots received after October 13th that do not have witnesses' signatures will not be counted.

To rectify this, it’s up to you to contact your county election manager’s office to get your absentee ballot properly witnessed so that it will be counted on election day.

If you’re still hanging on to your absentee ballot, you must get it notarized or signed by two witnesses before you submit it.

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